Laura is a mother of two, a teacher, writer and an artist. She also identifies with dreamer, visionary, advocate and an organizer.
At first glance, my avoirdupois is all you may see.
Sounds pretty sultry, doesn’t it?
Other words synonymous with that are corpulent, plump, fleshy.
My physicians have examined me and I’m certain,
deliberate with each other
the procedures and approaches they feel will save me from myself.
Let me share a secret with you.
I rescued myself without their assistance.
Each prominent feature of my generous figure has a story.
Many of us who schlepp around extra weight
Have chronicled our memoirs through devouring our pain
And though we still carry with us
The consciousness of those events
We are metaphorically larger and stronger
Then the memories that may haunt us.
I pursue no pity from you
When I look at my reflection, I do not see the form that may catch your eye
I see a blooming risk-taker
Who appears much younger than I presently am.
I don’t necessarily feel a fondness for my hefty appearance
But I am not disgusted by it either.
It has taken years to supplement my stature
And each pound I added allowed me to diminish
The flashbacks that altered my emotional growth.
To substantiate the thought of eating through controversy
May seem weak and indicate a lack of resolve
However, I was raised to believe food was more than mere nourishment
Partaking in the breaking of bread or the sharing of scrumptious dishes
Meant community, laughter, comfort.
My siblings, each of us struggling with our individual, inner demons
Could forget momentarily
As we formed a healing circle around the table
And found amity through the cuisine before us.
The distension of a bulging belly
Felt like a cradle that could sway complications elsewhere
If only for an evening.
That sense of fullness
Resonated infantile bliss after finishing a meal prior to a peaceful slumber.
The unwelcome attention
Bestowed upon me in my pubescent years
And my attempts to confront those encroachers
Or my choice to withdraw and discount them
Were pushed down, deep inside
With each morsel and swallow.
It didn’t take long to recognize that as a woman
I was expected to fulfill stereotypical assumptions
And I challenged each altercation
With humor, intelligence and determination.
I garnered respect and also recognized an appreciation
For my fortitude
My philosophies were basic
Treat others as you wished to be treated
Look at a person’s ability instead of their inabilities
I’ve always preferred occupations that involve advocacy
For the elderly or disabled
I’m quite adept in those situations
Yet they often bring forth confrontation
My inner psyche unfortunately becomes triggered
By a situation that screams for relief
My obvious form of contentment
And I would turn to my old comrade
That four- letter word that starts with an F
And brings such satisfaction to the lips
That’s right! Food!
Personal relationships that involved intimacy
Have come and gone
All leaving some type of imprint
That facilitated emotional and heartfelt growth.
The awareness of my own personal deficits
That contributed to the demise of a handful of those affiliations
Allowed me to become cognizant of my need to continue my pilgrimage
Toward loving myself unconditionally
While my body is my fortress
An edifice that wards off potential suitors
My reformist mentality
Truthfully longs to discard this sarcophagus
That shields and protects me
When I no longer feel afflicted
By prompts that activate my need to feel “full”
My outer presentation
Will mirror my internal graces
And I will materialize
Into the indomitable creation I was meant to be.
© 2019 Laura Cole